¿Qué valora cada generación al elegir una vivienda?

VIVIENDA

Por Inversion Finanzas

El alquiler y la compra de viviendas no paran de crecer. Según un estudio publicado por Idealista, el 15% de las viviendas alquiladas han estado menos de 48 horas en el mercado, Y aunque la compraventas de viviendas ha descendido en marzo un 3,1% interanual, según los datos del INE proporcionado por los registradores, hasta las 39.579 operaciones. Tanto la vivienda nueva (-4,6%) como la usada (-2,8%) cayeron en el tercer mes del año y rompiendo una racha de 10 meses consecutivos en positivo. Aún así, se estima que el 2018 cierre con un crecimiento del 7% en la compraventa de casas.

Pero qué es realmente lo que hace que nos decantemos por una vivienda o por otra. Habitissimo, ha realizado un estudio de mercado en el que han participado más de 1.000 personas de España para conocer sus preferencias sobre su hogar. En él se afirma que el 41,20% de los encuestados eligen la situación de la vivienda como el factor clave a la hora de elegir una vivienda, seguido de un 21,7 % que indica que lo que más valora a la hora de adquirir una vivienda es la luz de la vivienda.

El 9,6% de los españoles se decanta por la vivienda si está dispone de una cocina espaciosa y reformada, el 8,20% si la vivienda le permitirá ahorrar en las facturas energéticas. Un 7,6% de los españoles considera la domótica de la vivienda un factor decisivo a la hora de quedarse una vivienda. Finalmente, las instalaciones adicionales que dispone la vivienda como piscina, pista de paddel, zonas ajardinadas,… y los baños reformados y espacios, son los factores menos valorados por los españoles al elegir una vivienda, únicamente valorados por un 6,9% y un 4,9% respectivamente.

Pero estas preferencias pueden cambiar mucho cuando si analizamos los compradores o arrendadores según su edad y perfiles generacionales.

La situación de la vivienda

Es uno de los aspectos más valorados a la hora de elegir una vivienda. Estar en un determinado barrio, que disponga de los servicios necesarios para ahorrar los desplazamientos en coche o tener escuelas cerca, son los aspectos más valorados por el 41,2% de los españoles encuestados. Pero si analizamos este factor por edad, podemos ver como para la generación del Baby Boomer (55 a 65 años) considera el factor de la situación de la vivienda como uno de los más importantes a la hora de adquirir una vivienda, elegido por un 45,3%. Sin embargo, en cuanto más jóven es la generación menos valor se le da a la situación de la vivienda . La generación X valora la situación de la vivienda 3 puntos por debajo que la generación del Baby Boomer y la generación Millennial valora la situación de la vivienda 10 puntos menos que la Baby Boomer.

Vivienda luminosa

La iluminación en nuestros hogares es fundamental y más si se trata de la luz natural, ya que son muchas las ventajas que podemos sacar de ésta. Por ello, no es de extrañar que para un 21,7% resulta un factor decisivo disponer de una vivienda luminosa a la hora de buscar un hogar para alquilar o comprar. La generación que más valora la luz como un elemento indispensable en la vivienda es la generación X . El 26,2% os españoles de entre 35 a 45 años, considera la luz un factor indispensable a la hora de elegir una vivienda. La generación Millennial también considera la luz como un factor importante al decantarse por una vivienda, y es una prioridad para un 22,40% de ellos. La generación del Baby Boomer son los que menos importancia dan a la luz de su vivienda, solo un 14,6% de ellos considera la iluminación natural como algo indispensable a la hora de elegir
una vivienda.

Cocina reformada y espaciosa

La generación más cocinilla o que más valora la cocina, es la generación Millennial. Un 1 1,4% de ellos considera que tener una cocina reformada y amplia es un motivo decisivo a la hora de decantarse por una vivienda. Hay que tener en cuenta que entre los millennials, hay una rama apasionada por la gastronomía, y que lideran las redes sociales más sabrosas: la generación foodie . La otra generación que valora la cocina como un elemento esencial en un hogar es la generación del Baby Boomer. Un 10,6% de ellos considera la cocina reformada como uno de los tres factores más importantes al elegir una vivienda. Sin embargo, la generación X, es la generación menos apasionada por la cocina, y únicamente un 7% considera la cocina reformada como un imprescindible al elegir una vivienda.

El ahorro de energía

Los hogares consumen la quinta parte de toda la energía que se gasta en España y la cuarta parte de la electricidad, según el IDAE (Instituto público que depende del Ministerio de Industria). Por este motivo, no es de extrañar que para la generación del Baby Boomer que la vivienda disponga de las medidas idóneas para el ahorro, sea es uno de los motivos decisivos para un 12,5% de los encuestados de entre 55 a 64 años, a la hora de elegir una vivienda. Los encuestados Millennials también consideran importante que la vivienda esté correctamente aislada y que disponga de un sistema de climatización idóneo. Esto es un elemento decisivo para 10,4% de ellos. Sin embargo, como ocurría con las cocinas, la generación X no considera el aislamiento ni la climatización como un elemento indispensable para la elección de la vivienda y únicamente lo es para un 6% de estos.

La innovación tecnológica

El hogar inteligente ya no es un concepto relegado al campo de la ciencia ficción sino una realidad. La domótica que dirige las smart home permite al inquilino no tener que preocuparse de adecuar la temperatura de la casa a cada estación del año o que en el caso de lluvia, el riego se retrase o se detenga, para no malgastar agua. Por este motivo, el 13% de los encuestados que pertenecen a la generación del Baby Boomer consideran la domótica de la vivienda como un elemento determinante a la hora de arrendar o comprar una vivienda. Esta medida, también la tienen en cuenta un 8,2% de los encuestados que pertenecen a la generación Millennial. Al contrario que la generación X que únicamente un 5% considera la domótico como un elemento determinante a la hora de comprar o alquilar una vivienda.

Instalaciones: piscinas, pista de paddle, zonas ajardinadas…

Las instalaciones comunitarias como piscina, pista de paddle o zonas ajardinadas, son elementos decisivos a la hora de comprar o alquilar una vivienda por el 14% de los encuestados que pertenecen a la generación X. Las otras generaciones como la Baby Boomer o los Millennials no consideran las instalaciones como un factor determinante, representando un 4,5% y un 7,5% respectivamente.

Baños reformados y amplios

El baño es una de las estancias que más reforman los españoles, pero a la hora de la elegir comprar o alquilar una vivienda tienen muy poco peso. Únicamente el 7% de los encuestados que pertenecen a la generación X consideran que el baño como un factor determinante al elegir una vivieda. La generación Millennial y el Baby Boomer, no considera importante la reforma de esta estancia a la hora de comprar o alquilar la vivienda.

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Sueño Mexicano: ¿Por qué hay tantos ‘gringos’ en San Miguel de Allende?

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Por Omar Porcayo | Barrio

En esta ciudad conviven miles de estadounidenses y mexicanos, ajenos a la verborrea de Trump.

En uno de los momentos más tensos en la histórica relación entre Estados Unidos y México, la comunidad estadounidense en territorio azteca sigue presente y en plena expansión. La retórica agresiva del presidente Donald Trump, no ha mermado en lo absoluto el “sueño mexicano” de miles de sus compatriotas.

Uno de los lugares predilectos de jubilados norteamericanos es la ciudad de San Miguel de Allende, Guanajuato. Enclavada en el Bajío mexicano, esta ciudad colonial fundada en 1542 alberga a 10,000 ciudadanos que disfrutan de su “segundo aire” en sus coloridos callejones con una basta oferta cultural y gastronómica.

Con un clima templado todo el año y una arquitectura salida de un sueño, San Miguel de Allende es vibrante y apacible a la vez.

“Gente como yo va a Florida a morir, a San Miguel de Allende vienen a vivir”, explicó a AFP el estadounidense Michael Gerber, de 75 años y que eligió a México para vivir después de Turquía, Grecia y Suiza.

“Muchos amigos hemos vivido en otras partes del mundo, pero escogimos San Miguel de Allende porque es maravilloso, económico y hay muchas oportunidades para apoyar a la comunidad”, explicó el originario de Cleveland.

En 2017, San Miguel de Allende fue declarada “la mejor ciudad del mundo” en los premios Travel+Leisure World’s Best Awards, por atributos como mejores lugares de interés, monumentos, arte, cultura, restaurantes, comida, gente, amabilidad, compras y relación valor-dinero.

El romance entre esta ciudad Patrimonio Mundial de la Humanidad y los “gringos” no es nueva, de hecho comenzó en la década de los 40 cuando el estadounidense Stirling Dickinson llegó ahí por casualidad y reclutó compatriotas tras la guerra.

De acuerdo con la revista Smithsonian, un retraso en el tren  que tomaría Dickinson en su paso por México, le permitió conocer y enamorarse de la ciudad. Después de servir en el Ejército durante la Segunda Guerra Mundial, regresó junto a un grupo de veteranos para estudiar Bellas Artes y el resto es historia.

Meryl Streep visitó en febrero la ciudad, horas después de la ceremonia de los premios Óscar.

Meryl Streep

“Había solamente la luz necesaria para ver la iglesia (la Parroquia de San Miguel Arcángel) entre la neblina. Pensé ‘¡Dios mío, qué vista!’. En ese momento me dijo ‘Me voy a quedar aquí”, contó al autor John Virtue, quien escribió su biografía en el libro “Model American Abroad” (El modelo del americano en el extranjero).

Para 2010 en San Miguel de Allende vivían 8,000 jubilados, pero esa cifra solo se ha incrementado en la última década, al igual que los precios de las propiedades más céntricas, que hoy en día están valuadas en dólares. Hay residencias que fácilmente alcanzan los $1.5 millones.

A pesar del clima político que ha provocado la política antimexicana de Trump, los estadounidenses, al igual que otros 7,000 extranjeros de 74 países diferentes que viven en la ciudad, de acuerdo con el Instituto Nacional de Estadística y Geografía (Inegi), conviven con los mexicanos en armonía.

“Está bien, vienen aquí y dejan dólares. Algunos se enojan si tienen que hablar en español, quieren que todo sea en inglés, pero no hay mayor problema”, contó Ana, mesera de una famosa churrería ubicada a un costado de la plaza principal de la ciudad.

Sin perder su identidad, San Miguel de Allende se ha adaptado a las necesidades de sus habitantes. Por igual se encuentran locales de comida típica y antojitos, que bares con decoración estadounidense y lujosos restaurantes de autor.

La ciudad guanajuatense no es la única “colonizada” por los estadounidenses. Ajijic, Jalisco, en la ribera del lago de Chapala, también se ha convertido en una localidad donde es más fácil escuchar inglés que español en las calles. El mismo fenómeno se replica en Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco; Ensenada, Baja California y Puerto Peñasco, Sonora.

Así, los mexicanos que muchas veces están bajo el asedio del racismo en Estados Unidos, ponen el ejemplo, recibiendo con los brazos abiertos a sus vecinos, porque nunca se ha reportado un ataque de odio o discriminación hacia los norteamericanos.

How To Start A Blog About Your Retirement Abroad

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Of course, if you’ve been fortunate enough to discover the beauty of retirement overseas, you’ll want to share what you know with others! That’s only natural. Why should such a relaxing (or adventurous, depending on what you chose) lifestyle option be a secret?

If you want to get the word out about your new discovery, and the entire experience of retiring abroad, the best way to do that is to start a blog. It’s alright if you’re new to the blogging business. The first step is having a lot to say! Here are some important steps:

Do your research
This cannot be stressed enough. The online content world is ever-changing, and if you want readers (why else would you be doing this?), you’ll want to keep up with the times. The ideal content length of an article will vary depending on your audience. The retirement-ready audience usually has the attention span for a long, information-heavy article. Younger audiences prefer to keep it between 350 and 500 words. These are important points to consider.

Focus on helpful content
Today’s audience likes content to be helpful, rather than persuasive. Focus more on sharing your experience for the sake of helping your audience to see or understand something, rather than simply trying to convince them to join you in your version of paradise. Think about what would be most interesting for you to have heard about before you knew you were making this decision. Relate to them in that way, and you’ll create a loyal following.

Include pictures
Nothing keeps a reader’s attention better than engaging photos that illustrate the story you’re telling. If you’re writing about your new life in Belize, show off some of the perks! Many readers will simply skim over an article before actually deciding to delve into reading it. If pictures are being used to grab their attention, they’re more likely to stick around and read what you have to say.

Update regularly
Don’t let your blog go stale. Keep it updated on a regular basis with new content. This not only helps keep you in mind as a credible source, but it also helps you to appear more readily on search engines. One aspect of search engine optimization (SEO) is how often the website in question is updated and how useful readers have found the content.

Interact with your audience
This is sort of an extension of the point above, about how important it is for users to find your content helpful if you want it to appear on search engines like Google. Make your posts shareable on social media. You want it to be as easy as possible for them to share directly to Facebook, Pinterest, and anything else they’d be likely to use. Remember, that will depend on your target audience.

Be sure to encourage your audience to interact with each other as well. Request feedback and commentary at the end of your blogs. Ask others to share their experiences and create a conversation. This not only creates a community around your subject matter, but it also provides the ability to offer up more information than what you may have thought to share in the first place. New ideas should always be welcome!

Make sure the page design is attractive and straightforward
Don’t over-complicate things. You want your page to be easily navigable and to-the-point. Less is more. Make your message known right away on the landing page. Let readers know what to expect and that you have what they’re looking for from the very start. Finally, double and triple-check that there are no spelling or grammatical errors. Any small oversight in this area will take points away from your credibility.

Promote, promote, promote
This step is probably the most important, right up there with keeping your content updated. The web is a highly competitive place, with lots of information and lots of blogs out there – not to mention people who are talking about the same things you are talking about. You have to put yourself out there and make your presence known. The best way to do this is to look into SEO, Google AdWords, and companies that might like to help your vision. You can promote their content or products and services in return for them promoting you. There is a whole world out there of complementary businesses to work with!

While you’re exploring and fully enjoying your retirement abroad, keep these points in mind so that you can take a mental note when something relevant comes along. For example, take lots of pictures to use for your content. Jot down an anecdote when the mood strikes. Take notice of other businesses who might want to cross-promote. It will take some time, but if you’re dedicated you can get that blog and that following you’re looking for!

Original Source 

The 9 Ways To Retire Overseas For Less

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By International Living

In the U.S. today, almost nobody has saved enough to retire comfortably. But in places overseas, where the cost of living is lowand the quality of life is high, even a modest nest egg stretches comfortably. And the best part is: You don’t even have to move full-time to benefit.

Here are the 9 ways to retire overseas for less:

1. Early Retiree

The Early Retiree

Paul and Linda Kurtzweil say that retiring early to Akumal, on Mexico’s Caribbean coast, in 2015 may have been the best decision they’ve ever made. The couple swapped their house in an average neighborhood back in Florida for a modern condo located inside a beautiful resort complex on the Caribbean.

“I retired from law enforcement after 25 years, and Linda worked in child welfare management, both high-stress jobs,” says Paul. “We are both planners, so the decision to end up here didn’t happen by accident. We spent several years looking at all our options, including a total of over 30 trips to Mexico over the years.”

“When we decided to leave our jobs and move to Mexico, we lost 67% of our annual income. The amazing thing is that our standard of living is better than it was in the States.

2. The Test Driver

The Test Driver

Carol Barron test drives her retirement overseas by travelling in low season for three months at a time, renting rather than staying in a hotel, and shopping like a local not a tourist.

On planning recent trips to Nice, Florence, and Barcelona, Carol wondered whether she could match her Florida budget on the Riviera. Kathy says “I worried that high-end destination costs could threaten my dream of living wherever I wanted. But it’s perfectly possible to live affordably”

Not content to make a permanent move abroad, Carol is happy indulging her wanderlust for a little while longer. “I’m not quite ready to live full-time overseas, but I love scouting fabulous locations for when I will be. In the last few years I’ve enjoyed three-month trial stays in top cities, grabbing tons of fun for today, not waiting for tomorrow.”

3. The Roving Retiree

The Roving Retiree

Having been a working woman all her life, and having trouble accepting that she would have to work until she died. Kathy L. Hall became a roving retiree in 2015, planning to find an affordable place to live and enjoy her retirement.

Kathy set off on her first trip as a roving retiree in Southeast Asia and says “I explored Southeast Asia for eight months on my modest Social Security income of $1,300 a month. I truly loved several places, but none inspired me to relocate permanently. So after returning to the U.S. for a few months, the wanderlust once again took hold.”

Kathy has since found her personal paradise in Manzanillo, Mexico. She says “I’ll limit my roving to just a few months each year. I truly enjoy wandering, but I’m happy to have found a base I can return to each year, and save up for more adventures to come.”

4. The Solo Traveller

The Solo Traveller

New York native Theresa Conti made the leap across the ocean, uprooting herself and moving to Trieste, Italy, at age 64, as a solo traveler.

Theresa’s roots played a big part in her decision. Three of her grandparents were from southern Italy and her search for her family’s heritage brought her to Italy for the first time. After four trips to scout locations and find the place that “most felt like home,” Theresa settled on Trieste.

Theresa says “My vision was to live close to both the sea and mountains, in a walkable city that was safe, clean and quiet, with outdoors activities and an active life, and Trieste has it all. I’m a firm believer that when we follow our dreams, we naturally experience greater health, happiness, and fulfilment.”

5. The House Sitter

The House Sitter

The savings you can enjoy by housesitting allow you to stay in different parts of the world for far longer than a traditional vacation. One couple who are doing just that are Alan and Ros Cuthbertson who live in Chiang Mai. They explain “We lead two very different lifestyles. Most of the year we live in the vibrant city of Chiang Mai, in northern Thailand. But as the northern hemisphere warms up, we head to Europe to start our housesitting assignments. We have had many unforgettable experiences. Housesitting has changed our life; not only have we been to some incredible places, but we’ve also experienced living like a local. The homeowners are our new friends, and we always get so much pleasure out of seeing “our” pets again.”

“As much as we love our life in Chiang Mai, we have always wanted to travel the world—and housesitting means we can achieve our dream.

6. The European Explorer

The European Explorer

Denise Baxendell says turning 50 was a turning point for her and her husband, Stuart. Seeing friends and family getting older, some of them suffering from illness, she realized that it was time to do all those “rainy day’” things they had always talked about.

So, Denise and Stuart bought a 34-foot RV in the U.K. to travel across Europe. Denise says “Besides being able to absorb local culture, eat the delicious food, and take an extended vacation, the best thing about our adventure was meeting interesting people of all ages and nationalities. We drank wine with sommeliers, had conversations in French with Italian art experts and shared our barbecue with a newly engaged couple from New Zealand.”

7. The Snow Birder

The Snow Birder

Bill Dejardin and Judy Lutz, moved to Placenica, Belize from the Pacific Northwest in 2012, to make the most of Belize’s year-round, summertime weather. Bill says “Living in Belize: sunshine almost every single day, highs can range from the mid-90s F to an occasional 70 F, which doesn’t happen often. Blue sky versus gray sky…I’ll take blue sky. Even when we have those tropical storms, they can roll in for an hour or less, then we break out into sunshine. I much prefer the weather here.”

Besides the great weather, low costs, and great social scene, the couple enjoy the fact that Belize is English speaking, and they take the American dollar.

8. The Part Timer

The Part Timer

Paul Murray Elliott and his wife Wendy were in their mid-50s, when they started to crave a more exotic, cosmopolitan alternative to the small college-town life they were livimg in Bloomington, Indiana.

Paul explains “We settled on France as a destination for part-time living, and we decided to discover whether Nice provided what it would take to keep us coming back for the foreseeable future. It does. The almost-guaranteed fine weather means we’re outside most of the time in all seasons. Walking the steep, wild herb- and flower-covered slopes is both a feast for the eyes and good exercise for the heart. At home in Bloomington, I use a gym, because the weather is often either too hot or too cold to exercise outdoors.”

9. The Slow Traveler

The Slow Traveler

Vadim Ponorovsky retired at 50 and has been traveling non-stop. He has been to Mexico, Costa Rica, Italy, Spain, France, Japan, Thailand, and Vietnam, immersing himself in new cultures and making new friends. Vadim always loved traveling, but after a successful career owning French restaurants in New York, he is enjoying a more relaxing lifestyle traveling 12 months a year. By sticking to a monthly budget of around $3,000 and alternating expensive countries with budget-friendly ones, Vadim is abe to see much of the world. Vadim prefers slow travel, staying as long as his tourist visas allow.

Vadim says “I can stay in a European country with a tourist visa for 90 days, six months in Mexico. When I get there, I am not interested in going to the museums but in experiencing life and understanding how people live on a day-to-day basis.”

Original Source

 

Retiring And Living In The Yucatan – Merida To Progeso

Mérida at night.

By Ian MacKenzie |Escape Artist

If you are thinking about retiring to or living in Mexico you may know the rapid growth of the Riviera Maya means that it is no longer as affordable as it used to be.  Have you ever heard about living in Merida, Progreso, or retiring in the Yucatan?

Playa del Carmen is the fastest growing city in Latin America and the price you pay with such progress is that you have to compromise. The same goes for many other parts of this coastline that runs from Cancun to Tulum. But there is a nearby alternative that is worth looking at before you decide to commit to the tourism-driven lifestyle of this area.

To the west of the state of Quintana Roo is the state of Yucatan, stretching across the peninsula to the Gulf of Mexico. It’s one the four states with the highest investment in the country, and the demand for Merida real estate for houses and apartments here is growing thanks to economy backed by a strong industry built on solid foreign investment.

And yes, Yucatan does have beachfront real estate, about 250 miles of it.

Living in Merida for Retiring in the Yucatan

For those wishing to retire in the Yucatan region of Mexico, the capital city of Merida offers colonial-era charm, urban vibrancy, and culture. In Merida real estate, baby boomers own over 50% percent of vacation homes and rental properties. The houses in Merida that are located in the city centre, as well as those located on the coast, are the ones that American and Canadian investors seek out for a second home.

There are two key factors that attract retirees to Merida: affordability and modern amenities. Expats who are used to living comfortably and having the use of modern services and amenities will find the same in Merida. It has the modern-day conveniences and services that many Mexican colonial towns and cities don’t have.

Many foreign retirees are even investing in refurbishing older colonial homes in Merida, transform them back to their former glory. For expats the central colonias (neighborhoods) are very popular, you will find many concentrated there. But the further away you live from the historic center the lower prices become. You will find property ranging from $118,000 to $706,000 USD.

The main reason is due to security, quality of life and the number of hospitals and medical facilities. Thanks to this, the state of Yucatan is attracting retirees from the United States and Canada. Some are even moving from European nations like Germany and France. There are even buyers here form as far away as Japan. It continues to be rated as one of the top three best destination for retirees, which is great news for investment and the future of the area.

New laws have been put in place making it easier for foreigners to buy real estate without any problems. The stats for Merida showed an average growth of over 20% in the first 8 months of this year, compared to 2016. According to City Hall, it is the 4th city in Mexico with the highest private real estate investment, surpassed only by Monterrey, Mexico City and Guadalajara.

Many expats that have moved here agree that it is a good place to raise children. The city is highly rated by Forbes magazine, ranking as one of the Top Cities in 2017. The capital city is a mix of culture and cuisine and one of the safest destinations in Mexico. Residents that live here enjoy a city with a rich cultural life filled with theatres, museums and art galleries, bars, live music, art shows and local cuisine. And it’s easily accessible; Merida international airport offers direct flights via Aeromexico, United Airlines and Westjet.

Living in Progreso – Yucatan Beach Living

Drive 30 minutes from Merida and you will find this small fishing village of 38,000 people. Despite being a small, town residents have access to the same services and amenities as their larger neighbor.

The mix of Caribbean, colonial and modern styles greatly appeals to Americans and Canadians and prices here are lower than the rest of Yucatan. So, real estate in Progreso is ideal if you are looking for a lot to build your own house or simply want to invest in a vacation home.

The lifestyle here appeals to those want the tranquility of a village setting and a a low cost of living. For the same price that you would pay for a small sized condos in the Riviera Maya you can get something much bigger here, prompting foreign buyers and expats are choose Progreso over Playa del Carmen and Tulum.

Living in Campeche for Yucatan Retirement

Despite being the next state over, it is worth mentioning Campeche as well. It is located 2 hours away from Merida and is a place packed with history. Over 40% of the state is covered in jungle and boasting the nation’s largest bioreserve.
The city of Campeche has plenty colonial architecture, delicious Yucatecan food, and restaurants, along with one of the oldest Carnival celebration in the country.

Campeche beachfront property can be found on the Gulf 30 minutes south of the city, while traditional Mexican homes can be found in city center. These involve some investment for restoration, but will be cheaper than many other larger colonial cities.

Conclusions about Living in Merida and the Yucatan for Retirement

The city of Merida and has major plans for further future development and the state of Yucatan is showing the kinds of opportunities for investment that were seen in the Riviera Maya years ago when it was first growing. Here you will find much of what you love about living in Mexico, but at a lower cost than the tourism-dependent region of Riviera Maya. So take this into consideration when you begin your search for property in this part of Mexico.

Original Source

The Ultimate Guide to Driving in Mexico: Getting a Vehicle in Mexico + Driving Safety +

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By Emma | Always a Gringa
Whenever friends, family, or my students discover that I have a vehicle here in SLP they immediately ask “How do you like driving in Mexico?” some with a small smirk stretching across their face (often locals) others (foreigners) paralyzed in fear at the thought of driving anywhere besides their home country.
Granted it can be intimidating when you start driving in a new place prior to factoring in the differences of driving in a new country. Learning to drive abroad always comes with its challenges, whether it is adapting to navigating on the opposite side of the street, a different mode of transportation, or just learning which rules go and which ones don’t.

Driving in Mexico has hands down been one of the most frustrating things for me as an expat. I don’t know exactly why it made the top of the list maybe it was the traffic, topes, potholes, or the first time someone cut me off when they made a left turn from the far right lane.

But don’t fret! I am going to provide you with the must-knows to safety in the magical land south of the border, whether you are moving to Mexico, driving to Mexico, or just renting a car in Mexico all the need to know to get you driving around Mexico in road trip fashion is below.

Getting a Vehicle

You have a few different options here: you can either rent a car, buy a car in Mexico, or drive your own car to Mexico from the USA. Renting a car in Mexico can be quite pricey – especially if you don’t have your own insurance already (typically covered through a credit card).
 Renting a Car in Mexico 

Renting a car can be quite expensive and Mexico and it is pretty much always more expensive than what they quote you for. I still believe it is better than having to take buses which doesn’t allow you much flexibility. Also be sure to check if your credit card includes rental car insurance as this will take your price down drastically. Some available car rental companies are:

  • Hertz Rental
  • Avis Rental 
  • Cancun Area
    • Avant Car Rental
    • Thrifty Rental 

A friend of mine took a road trip through Central Mexico and she rented a VW Bento for 8 days at the cost of 7600 pesos or 410 USD. She was originally quoted 6300 pesos. This price included insurance, which is mandatory for most areas in Mexico.

Buying a Car in Mexico

Depending on how long you plan on staying in Mexico you could always purchase a cheap car and use that for travel – but that can become quite complicated. (post coming soon)

Driving A Car to Mexico

  • If you live in the US close to Mexico you might want to drive your car over the border for your vacation. If you would like to do this you must get your Temporary Import Permit (TIP)  at the border (different rules for Sonora & Baja). If you are visiting Mexico on a tourist permit, you can import your foreign-plated vehicle to Mexico, but you must export it again before the permit expires. FMM permits last for a maximum of 180 days (6 months) and cannot be renewed or extended beyond this time period.
  •  If you plan to drive south of the border zone or outside of the Sonora permit free area or outside Baja, you must obtain a “Temporary Import Permit” online at the border, or from certain Mexican consulates.  Banjercito – Mexico’s Banco Nacional del Ejército Fuerza Aérea y Armada, is the government authority who issues vehicle permits.
  • There is a “Free Zone” within 22 miles of the US/Mexico border. So if you are driving over for a quick trip you do not need to apply for and obtain a temporary import permit for your vehicle.

Insurance for Driving in Mexico

In order to bring your auto, RV, or motorcycle into Mexico you must purchase car insurance.  Your domestic auto insurance will not be honored in Mexico.  Remember to buy Mexican insurance before your trip online. It is easier to buy Mexican insurance online than at the border.

You must keep your vehicle legal while in Mexico in order for your Mexican insurance to pay a claim.  If your immigration status changes, you must notify Aduana.

For US Plated Vehicles 

  • Progressive Auto Insurance
  • Esurance

For Mexican Plated Vehicles 

  • HDI Seguros Mexico
  • AXA Seguros
  • GNP Seguros
For Rental Car Insurance just purchase it through your rental agency.

Getting Around in Mexico

Driver’s License
The funny thing about getting a Mexican driver’s license is that many Mexicans don’t have one or don’t even know how to get one. I tried to find out how I could get one so that I could drive my husband’s company car – a requirement from his company, but I was in shock that many people didn’t know how or weren’t sure of the requirements. I did discover it is much easier to get one in more touristy areas like Cancun or Puerto Vallarta, but here in San Luis Potosí, I was told the requirements included taking a driving course in Spanish and taking a blood test – no manches.

Directions
Google maps and iPhone maps work decently until you are in newer construction areas that haven’t made the map yet. The nice thing about Google Maps is that you can download an area on the map to use when you don’t have a lot of spare data to use. Sometimes google maps don’t work great for specific addresses, but I typically will have someone send me a location pin through WhatsApp. That way I am guaranteed to have the exact location and Google Maps typically can’t mess that shizz up. I’ve also been told Waze works pretty well in most areas around Mexico too – it also has really live traffic notifications.

Fueling Up for Gas
Pretty much like the USA, but you NEVER pump your own gas. You will pull up and request your preferences, Verde/Rojo lleno por favor or tell them the amount you would like.  They will ask you if you are paying with Tarjeta (card) or effectivo (cash). Paying in cash is easiest, but if you pay with a card you might have to get out of the car to punch in your numbers or possibly guess the amount you will pay prior to paying. Sometimes foreign cards won’t work if you are in a more rural area. They will also likely ask if you want them to clean your windshield or check your oil. Always tip the attendant because that’s just what you do here. So be nice. Three to five pesos is sufficient – more if they clean your window or check your oil.

Toll Roads
Tolls can get expensive, but honestly, there is nothing better than driving through the mountains on roads so smooth you daydream of rollerblading on them – is this just me? Always carry small cash for the tolls in the car. Fortunately, I’ve always had cash on these toll roads and haven’t had to deal with what the policy is if you don’t have any cash- but if they are anything like the US they get are way more expensive when they finally find their way to you in the mail. If you plan on doing any type of road trip or long distance driving you will definitely encounter toll roads. I’ve driven on multiple toll roads on my trips to Sayulita, Michoacán, and my Road Trip through Central Mexico.


Driving Laws in Mexico

If you are familiar with driving in the USA all the laws are pretty similar. However, a lot of people don’t follow the laws here, which means it could be unsafe if choose to. So as a rule of thumb I would trust your instinct first when it comes to driving. Be a polite defensive driver and don’t expect that someone will do what they are supposed to. I’ve had quite a few friends who have been the victim of a hit and run when the other driver was at fault.
When it comes to speed limits within a city I would advise you to stick with the flow of traffic. Often traffic speeds are not posted and it is just safer to follow the speed everyone else is driving – unless you want to chance getting rear-ended.
Mexico Traffic and Driving

Passing 

People are much more congenial about passing in Mexico. When someone knows that you likely want to pass them they don’t punch the breaks or even speed up, they will slowly merge onto the side of the road so you have room to pass, almost like they create this imaginary third lane. Due to this, people often feel comfortable passing while there is a car in the other lane. People just move out of the way and they aren’t pissed about it.  Sometimes the car in front of you will put on their blinker or hazards, letting you know it is okay for you to pass them.
 No Passing Sign_Guide to Driving in Mexico

 

Stop Signs
Stop signs act more as yield signs in Mexico and honestly I now rarely execute a complete stop. This is more for safety purposes because no one expects you to fully stop and if you do you have a high chance of getting rear-ended. There are so many car accidents in Mexico, I’d rather play safe than legal. You would be shocked at the number of neck braces that I see here. Even tried my friend’s on, you can never be too careful.

Stop Lights
I’ve seen many drivers and even busses make a complete stop at the light, look both ways and then drive right through the intersection if they think the coast is clear. I have not gotten this ballsy yet and have decided that this is where my flexibility ends. However, I will drive through a non-working stop light-because ain’t nobody got time for that.

Glorietas
The glorietas in Mexico range in magnitude: from the typical turn circle to the monstrous GLORIETA. Forget what I said earlier about the people of Mexico being congenial drivers – when it comes to glorietas it is every (wo)man for herself. Some glorietas have traffic lights mid-circle and others are so big and chaotic that they hire a police escort to guide cars through – you would think that the presence of a police officer would help curb aggressive cut-offs, but it definitely doesn’t.

The only accident I’ve been in (the USA or Mexico) happened to be in this dreaded Glorieta. (pictured below)
Here is a diagram of the rules about how to drive through a Glorieta, but honestly once you get in there these guidelines really go out the window. If you aren’t assertive you will definitely get pushed out of a lane (no lanes, this diagram is a lie) and will likely miss your exit which you will then have to suffer another journey around the chaotic circle.
glorietta guide

Safety While Driving in Mexico

Topes = road bumps from hell.
Like glorietas, they range in size from small tender bumps to a rollercoaster-like jump that will send any unbuckled passenger flying into the air. They often come unmarked as well, so always beware of possible topes when you start to approach a city or town. They will be lurking….
Topes_MexicoDrivingGuide
They also have reverse topes (no idea of their actual name, so someone please tell me). These are just as terrifying as they sound. They are basically a long big intended hole that stretches the width of the road. These are rarer (fortunately) and I have – gratefully – never hit one of these unexpectedly.

Potholes
These are not your Cali potholes and Michigan potholes don’t even measure up – which is terrifying if you’ve ever experienced a spring in the Midwest. These are deep, all consumable potholes. Locals will often insert whole construction cones inside of these potholes as a warning to unsuspecting drivers- do not hit these by accident and definitely not on purpose. Take extra care after a rain as these potholes are extremely hard to notice when they fill up with rain.

Death Trap U-Turns

These are located all over Mexico and are extremely dangerous. They are often located on main roads or highways. The most important thing is to be patient and to take your time. Vehicles are coming at high speeds and you want to have the most time possible to turn and speed up. Also, be very careful when approaching cars that are utilizing these U-Turns (especially during early or late hours). Cars and Semis will turn when it is not safe and may turn into your lane.

A lot of truck companies don’t restrict their drivers’ hours and many will be under the influence of inadequate amounts of sleep or drugs that will help them stay awake. I have a friend who was hit by a semi truck driver early one morning at one of these U-Turns and he didn’t even stop, just kept on driving even though her car was smashed and she required to go the hospital.

Animals in the Road

It is very common also to see street dogs crossing the road and horses or cows in more rural areas. Just be careful, pay attention, and be patient.

Horses in the Road when driving in Mexico

Random Construction
Construction can happen on any road at any time – even if you thought it was a perfectly beautiful road. Mexican construction crews aren’t always on top of their signage so it is always important to take precautions when driving day and night. One night when I was driving home from work my lane suddenly ended and was replaced by a whole filled with broken up concrete and gravel. The only reason I noticed it was due to two small cones that were just chilling on top of the broken up concrete. No warning signs, lights, anything.

Random Construction in SLP, Mexico
However, often on toll roads, the construction crews are really on top of their game. Typically there will be a man waving a flag, a shirt, or a sign to alert you of the approaching construction. Often you will just have to sit for a few minutes as they alternate the lanes of traffic
 Construction in Mexico

Driving at night 

I would advise against driving in Mexico at night (see potholes above), especially any long distances. The roads can be sketchy (we’ve been over this). Also, if you are driving at night on long stretches of road you are more likely to run into roadblocks or cartel activity. Like my momma said nothing good happens after 12 o’clock.
Also, drunk driving is quite bad in Mexico and not heavily patrolled. Many bars stay open late into the night, not closing until 4 a.m. sometimes even 6 a.m. The last two times my husband and I were driving to the airport at 4 a.m. we saw two different drunk driving accidents. Fortunately, they hadn’t hit another car but had slammed head-on into the railing. Can you imagine if another car would have been there? Locals know to stay off the road at that time for safety purposes.
Poor Weather 
In the event of rainy or the rarer snowy weather take extra precautions. It is just like the USA with bad weather – people forget how to drive and even more so when you don’t typically get that much rain or snow. Many cities also have old drainage systems and water can often cover a large portion of the road and fill potholes. Drive slow and be patient.

 

Accidents in San Luis Potosí, Mexico

 

Using your hazards

Mexicans truly take advantage of their hazards and I have really taken a liking to this. I’m bringing it to the US ya’ll. If you’re driving in Mexico on the main road/highway and there is a traffic jam ahead everyone will turn on their hazards as a way to warn their fellow drivers behind them that they need to slow down. This is a way to avoid more accidents.

They also use it to alert general driving conditions and car accidents. If you see a car with their hazards on in front of you or passing you – I would advise that you slow down, they are just helping you out.

 

Vendors and Begging
The wonderful thing about driving in Mexico is that you don’t even need to go to the store if you want to buy something. Depending on the city you are in you can purchase mirrors, mops, clothing, churros, fruit, kids toys, nuts, handmade goods, and candies while you are waiting at the red light. You can even get your front and back window washed. It is worth 10 pesos to just to see the guy work so fast to complete it in the time that you are at the light. Bobby and I will watch in suspense “is he going to make it?” “No, way he is not going to make in time, the lights green already” spoiler alert… he always makes it.

Also, I’ve bought churros before while I was stuck in traffic which magically resolves road rage in one sugary bite.
car wash at the stoplight
There are more than just vendors through- a lot of immigrants from Central America travel through Mexico and will ask for money. They often will show you their passport in an effort to show they are legit. It is nice to give some money to those travelers since often they are escaping very dangerous situations and the road through Mexico is extremely dangerous – many people being murdered or being trafficked.

Parking / Estacionamiento

Depending on where you are driving in Mexico you can typically find these three different options for parking.

 

Parking on the street
This is the most common option in most cities, however, there are some unwritten rules you must follow. Almost all of the side of the road is fair game as long as you are on the correct side of the road, you parallel park, and you don’t block anyone’s door/drive. Also, some locals get a little angry with people parking in front of their house because this is often their only spot to park too. They retaliate by putting large rocks, chairs, or other objects in the way so you won’t park there. So avoid those spots as well.

 

Parking in a lot
If you are parking in a lot, you will typically be required to drive through the ticket booth, collect a ticket and pay it before you leave. You cannot, however, pay when you are leaving the lot, you must take your ticket into wherever you are going and then pay INSIDE or at a booth in the lot before you get in your car. You then will need to insert the paid ticket into the ticket booth when you leave. The price is typically around 10 pesos for 3 hours.

 

Valet Parking
Valet parking is everywhere! Shopping centers to fast food restaurants provide valet parking and it is relatively cheap as well, running anywhere from 20 to 50 pesos ($1.50 – $3.00). I don’t think I’ve ever had my car parked by valet before coming to Mexico and now I do it all the time because a girl likes to feel fancy (on a budget).

estacionamiento parking


Tickets/Bribes 

Traffic Tickets and Bribes
I’ve mentioned earlier that you can’t expect to break the rules and get away with it. Many cities use video cameras on the road to employ automated ticketing. If you get too many of these while driving in Mexico you will most likely get your front license plate taken until you pay the tickets.

As for regular old-fashioned tickets – these are less common. If you do get pulled over – the police officer will often expect a bribe. This comes from countless first-hand experiences of locals and gringas alike. Obviously, not every city is the same, but it is always good to expect it so you are prepared. If you’re a gringa/o you can expect to pay anywhere from 600-1000 pesos. If you don’t speak Spanish or pretend you don’t you can often get away with no ticket or bribe – depending on the police officer.

Parking Tickets
If you do get a parking ticket while driving in Mexico they will likely take your license plate and hold it until you pay. This happened to us when visiting San Miguel de Allende after we accidentally parked in front of a loading zone. We were able to quickly find the police station that was referenced on our ticket in order to pay and retrieve our license plate. This ticket ran us 161 pesos – roughly 8 USD.

Putting License on after parking ticket

Car Accidents 

I recently got into my first ever car accident driving in Mexico. I was at the treacherous Glorietta (see below) and rear-ended the car in front of me. During the 10 minutes that we were sitting there, there were two other car accidents that happened on either side of me. Car accidents are so prevalent in Mexican cities and especially in San Luis Potosí because of how fast the city has been growing and the roads were just not constructed for such a large population.
If you do get in a car accident while driving in Mexico quickly call your car insurance company and they will likely have somewhere there in 15-20 minutes. How it works is both parties call their car insurance companies and they then will both show up on the scene and will fill out the paperwork. My insurance officer took photos, a photo of my license and my insurance information and that was that. It was surprisingly quick and convenient and didn’t involve any police officers.
I personally didn’t do enough damage to my car to need it to get fixed in the shop. If you do need to get your car fixed the insurance company will do it through the shop of their choice which can often take a long time. Some of my friends had their car fixed anywhere from 3 weeks to 3 months.
Glorietta in San Luis Potosí

Things to Keep in Your Car While Driving in Mexico

All Important Paperwork- You should have all important paperwork including your insurance information and proof of ownership

Identification – Your country’s Drivers License or your passport

Cash – for tolls, bribes, and snacks!

Snacks – If you are on a road trip I would definitely recommend packing an arsenal of snacks – a girl gets hangry. Driving in Mexico for long distances usually means toll roads and those are food deserts people! Unless you just want to eat some Takis or twinkies from an Oxxo – head to the market prior to your trip and pick up some fresh fruit and veggies!

A Go-Girl – Those toll roads are long and honestly I’ve stopped quite a few times to take a leak on the side of the road without a go-girl (someone stole mine coming back from China. Gross right?) and I just know it would be 50x more pleasant with a go-girl in hand.

Toilet Paper – See above

First Aid- Who knows what is going to happen when you are on the road in Mexico – just kidding – I’ve never used mine. Just better to be safe than sorry. Be prepared!

Spare Tire – For all of those road hazards, the question isn’t if it will happen, the question is when. Also, in Mexico, they have a special security lugnut that comes with the car that will lock the tire. You will need the security lug nut adapter to take off the one security lugnut to take off your tire – it is typically stored in the dash compartment. The security lug nut adapter is specialized for your car. If you don’t have this security adapter you will likely have to take your car to a shop or get it towed.

Original Source

10 Tips for Anyone Thinking of Retiring in Mexico

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Q-Roo Paul | Two Expats Mexico

Since starting this blog almost two years ago, my wife and I have literally received thousands of emails from readers asking for our advice about retiring in Mexico. I lost count somewhere around the 10,000 mark.

Whenever a reader asks me for tips or general advice, I share the following 10 tips with them. I figured I would post them here in the hopes that it will cut down on the number of emails we receive.

1. Downsize

By the time you’re ready to retire, chances are that you’ve accumulated a lot of stuff. Well, it’s time to start getting rid of it in preparation for your new life south of the border. Holding on to all those things will only complicate the process of moving and cost you more money in the long run (e.g. moving costs, storage fees).

2. Get a temporary or permanent resident card

Life is just much easier when you have a temporary or permanent resident card. You can open bank accounts, register a vehicle, participate in the public healthcare system and the list goes on and on.

3. Leave your car behind

This applies to anyone thinking of permanently moving to Mexico and who doesn’t live 25 km from the U.S. border, designated parts of Sonora or in the Baja Peninsula. The requirements to import a vehicle are far more lax in those areas.

4. Leave your furniture behind

They sell furniture in Mexico and it’s actually quite affordable to have custom pieces made. International moving and shipping services are expensive and sometimes things end up missing or damaged along the way.

5. Start learning Spanish now

Learning a language takes time and effort. It’s not going to magically happen overnight, so you might as well start working on it now. The more you know when you arrive, the easier it will be for you to communicate and get things done in Mexico.

There are several free resources available online to help you learn Spanish. We even have free video lessons on our site complete with practice exercises.

6. Get a Mexican cell phone number

This will make it much easier to get things done and get callbacks from businesses (they won’t call your foreign number). Also, many banks require a Mexican cell phone number in order to do online banking due to certain security protocols.

7. Download Whatsapp

This is a the free app that is used by almost everyone in Mexico to call and text.

8. Open a Mexican bank account

There are numerous benefits to opening a bank account in your new country.

9. Get healthcare coverage

Mexico has both a private and a public healthcare system. It’s important to research your options before moving down and to get some type of health coverage as soon as possible.

To learn all about your healthcare options, we recommend buying Monica Rix Paxson’s ebook on the subject.

10. Hire people (when necessary) to get things done

There is a huge learning curve involved when you move to another country and you will find that even the simplest of tasks (like getting the electric bill put in your name) can turn out to be more complicated than you anticipated.

If you move to a large, friendly expat community like the one where we live, then it’s not a problem because everyone helps each other.

If not, you might want to consider hiring people to assist with tasks such as: registering your car, completing the second part of the resident card process, and putting utilities in your name. People who offer these types of services are often referred to as gestores.

Original Source